Monthly Archives: January 2014

And the Answer is: March 31st

The question –

More Than Half of Americans Don’t Know Obamacare Sign-Up Deadline – MainStreet.

The survey found that 24% incorrectly think the deadline already passed on Jan. 1 while 11% wrongly think they have until December 31, 2014 to sign up, a full nine months after the March 31, 2014 deadline.
Many Americans are not taking the deadline to sign up for Obamacare seriously. More than three in five (62%) of Americans think the government will push the deadline back to a later date.

Who can blame them. The administration changes the regulations and dates “on the fly”, why should they stop on March 31st?

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Articles: ObamaCare May Devastate the Real Estate and Travel Industries

Articles: ObamaCare May Devastate the Real Estate and Travel Industries.

Check your network and check your doctors. Most Obamacare plans offer restricted networks in state and you are out of network if you are out of state.

Americans are among the most mobile people on earth, but ObamaCare may soon start freezing them in place. Millions are losing their health insurance policies and being forced onto the ObamaCare exchanges, where most plans only provide local medical coverage. As Americans realize they must pay for all non-emergency medical care when they leave their home county, their decisions may have a profound impact on the real-estate market, particularly the second home sector, and on the travel business.

I recently interviewed a woman I’ll call Sue, whose story may become increasingly common. Sue, a 60-year-old retiree, and her husband bought a second home in South Carolina to escape the Connecticut winters. “I had a Blue Cross Blue Shield policy in Connecticut, and I used it with no problem in South Carolina. I found an internist and ophthalmologist and dermatologist down here, and kept the rest of my doctors up north.”

“The price was reasonable. It cost me $450 a month, with a $2,500 deductible. It was slightly more for out of network; there was no co-pay, and I got my prescriptions filled in both states with no problem.”

“Then I got the letter telling me that my policy would no longer exist, because it didn’t comply with the new health care law. They wanted to transfer us into a new plan that doubled my premium to $900 a month. The deductible went up to $3,500, and it covered zero out of network.”

In Colorado, the only companies offering plans with nationwide networks are:

  • Rocky Mountain Health Plans
  • Cigna (only available for purchase in the immediate Denver metro area)
  • Assurant Health

In fact Assurant Health offers plans with nationwide networks in 42 states. HOWEVER, you won’t find them on any Federal or State “Exchange or Marketplace”. That means their plans are not eligible for premium assistance but they are still the same Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum plans required by Obamacare.

One issue that bothers me in the above article is this paragraph:

“My husband looked around and finally found a policy that has out of network coverage, but it comes with a very steep price. It’s $900 a month, with a $7,000 deductible and a co-pay on everything. Basically, it’s catastrophic insurance, and I’ll be paying my South Carolina doctors out of pocket.”

The maximum out of pocket per person for any ACA compliant plan is $6350. Either this plan is not ACA compliant (i.e. not a true major medical plan) or Sue is confused about the deductible.

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Healthcare.gov security: “So, it’s just wide open”

Hacking expert David Kennedy says he cracked HealthCare.gov in 4 minutes – Washington Times.

“And 70,000 was just one of the numbers that I was able to go up to and I stopped after that,” he said. “You know, I’m sure it’s hundreds of thousands, if not more, and it was done within about a 4 minute timeframe. So, it’s just wide open.”

“You can literally just open up your browser, go to this, and extract all this information without actually having to hack the website itself,” he said.

Be careful out there.

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An Obamacare supporter’s misadventures with HealthCare.gov

An Obamacare supporter’s misadventures with HealthCare.gov | The Daily Caller.

Our troubles may strike some as trivial and particular, although they wouldn’t if it happened to them. And anyone who wants a successful system – as we do – must understand that these nightmares are happening across the nation to the very people who want Obamacare to work.

This story appears to be the Deliverance version of signing up for Obamacare.

Unfortunately, having dealt with many clients, it’s all to believable.

  • Restricted provider networks
  • Restricted formularies
  • Complicated subsidy eligiblity
  • Possibly higher premiums

All of the above are gifts of Obamacare.

If you don’t qualify for a subsidy or it is very small, my recommendation is:

  • Do NOT use the exchange
  • Contact a broker
  • Purchase directly from the carrier, which will also avoid security issues with the exchange websites.
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Why HealthCare.gov is riddled with security problems

Why HealthCare.gov is riddled with security problems | Fox News Video.

Bottom line: If you are not eligible for a subsidy, you should strongly consider purchasing “off the exchange”. If you are eligible for a subsidy, you must purchase “on the exchange”. If you can afford it, my recommendation is to reconcile the totaly subsidy on your 2014 tax rerturn. By doing that, you don’t have to reveal all the detailed infromation that Medicaid wants. The downside is you will not be advanced the subsidy.


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U.S. judge upholds subsidies pivotal to Obamacare

U.S. judge upholds subsidies pivotal to Obamacare – Yahoo Finance.

A ruling in favor of a lawsuit brought by individuals and businesses in Texas, Kansas, Missouri, Tennessee, West Virginia and Virginia would have crippled the implementation of the law by making health insurance unaffordable for many people.

In his ruling, U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman in Washington D.C. wrote that Congress clearly intended to make the subsidies available nationwide under the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

The issue being contested was whether subsidies should be available through the Federal health exchange.

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5 Reasons to Not Freak Out About an Obamacare Death Spiral

5 Reasons to Not Freak Out About an Obamacare Death Spiral – Yahoo Finance.

Here’s what is going to happen: Sign-ups are going to accelerate before the deadline. There will be some bumps. People might not initially get the coverage they think they’ve signed up for. Or they might be upset about narrow doctor networks. Or, in some cases, they might have to pay more for the same coverage they had before. These are all problems—some of them by design—but they aren’t existential problems. There just isn’t a lot of evidence that Obamacare is already doomed.

That said, here are five more reasons not to freak out if the administration doesn’t hit its target for sign-ups or young invincibles.

Follow the link!

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Transparency: Obama Opposes Weekly Reports on ObamaCare

Surprise – Transparency: Obama Opposes Weekly Reports on ObamaCare | Jammie Wearing Fools.

In the first of two separate Statements of Administration Policy, the White House said it opposes weekly reporting requirements on both enrollments and the operation of the HealthCare.gov website because it would require “unfunded, unprecedented, and unnecessary reporting requirements” on the health insurance exchanges.

Whatever. Another example of the public being too stoopid to handle the truth without it being manipulated by those in charge.

That said, I wouldn’t trust whatever they told us anyway.

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13,000 Obamacare Applicants Have No Records with Health Insurers

Amateur hour: 13,000 Obamacare Applicants Have No Records with Health Insurers.

Record-keeping snags could complicate the start of insurance coverage this month as people begin using policies they purchased under President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul.

Insurance companies are still trying to sort out cases of so-called health insurance orphans, customers for whom the government has a record that they enrolled, but the insurer does not.

Government officials say the problem is real but under control, with orphan records being among the roughly 13,000 problem cases they are trying to resolve with insurers. But insurance companies are worried the process will grow more cumbersome as they deal with the flood of new customers who signed up in December as enrollment deadlines neared.

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Oregon Mother caught by “family glitch”

Oregon Mother: I Can’t Afford Obamacare For Myself, 1-Year-Old Son « CBS Seattle

The problem…

Holly’s husband works for a non-profit organization that pays for his health care, but the couple is unable to afford to have her and their son covered under his plan. And she’s been told their combined income is too much to qualify for a subsidized health care plan under Cover Oregon.

I have to read between the lines just a little bit, but the situation most likely is the following:

  1. Holly and her can be covered under her husband’s plan, it’s just too expensive
  2. Since the coverarge for Holly’s husband by itself is affordable, the plan is deemed affordable regardless of how much it costs to add Holly and her son.
  3. If 1  & 2 are true, then Holly and her son do NOT qualify for a subsidy.

Brings back Nancy Pelosi’s statement to the effect that “we have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it”.

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